Sunday, April 11, 2010

Blessed Art Chicago

Yesterday was kind of rough. I spent the earlier part of the day focusing on beauty and wellness by going to yoga and then the salon. Part of the salon service included a complimentary makeup job. I know. Poor me. But get this, after my hair and makeup was finished and I looked well let's face it, fucking stunning I realized that I had no evening plans. The staff at the salon were all going wow, where are you going tonight? And I was like oh! I haven't decided yet. Truthfully I intended to spend the rest of the day reading and watching what Netflix sent but it seemed unfair that all this new beauty was going to waste on a la-z-boy chair.

So I made some calls and no one was available. Oh my goodness. That self esteem was quickly deteriorating. I researched some options to take myself out on a Saturday night at least but nothing felt doable really. Where I am in comparison to where I'd like to hang out is a considerable distance and I'd have to drive. I usually drive on the weekends but didn't feel like it if I was going to have to be alone. A movie? I had one at home. A cafe? The ones near me closed early. Nothing clicked. I was actually all dressed up and had no where to go. Ouch.

I was thinking of what I would do in that situation when I was in Seattle and the answer came quick. I would have gone to my favorite tea cafe which I could walk to and was open late, or I would go to my favorite bar where there was always someone to talk to. Two weeks ago I went to my favorite bar in Chicago but no one said a word to me and I kept getting bumped into. I don't know why things are so different for me here. It's like I moved home and found out that it's all new.

Last weekend I was thankfully invited to a Passover Seder at a friend's house. I felt lucky and relieved that I could take part in this holiday instead of spending more time at home. My mom was exhausted from dealing with my grandma's hospital stay and Grandma obviously wasn't feeling great so we didn't have Passover. It's a ton of work. There are several courses to this meal and then reading the Haggadah just takes hours! My family hasn't done this since I was about 13 and I was nasty back then. I totally didn't get it and listening to my mom blather on with the reading just felt utterly meaningless. I took it out of her hands and forced her to stop faking the religious crap so we could eat and get it over with. It's funny how now I wish we had it.

Anyway I went to this party where we all took turns reading from the Haggadah and dipped greens in salt water and put horseradish on matzoh and ate store bought gefilte fish and so on. It made me feel part of something, which was a feeling I had been looking for here for a while. I wish that I had cousins or some more family to do stuff with.

My grandma was amazed that I went to someone else's Passover party and she was even more amazed to find out that a man did all the cooking. She told me a hilarious story about horseradish. She always used to grate horseradish by hand and she did it outside so her eyes could get fresh air and so no one would see her cry. A co-worker of hers wanted to try this so Grandma explained everything and the woman was upset with her the next day. She said, "You know. My mamma die and I not cry so much. I'll buy in the jars." Grandma laughed her head off and told me this woman was a wimp because she couldn't cry a little for all the bitters in the world.

The trick to nights like yesterday is to be grateful for the good nights out and find more to do out by myself. I used to go out for salsa and tango all the time here and but I haven't found the right place or right people for it this time around. If this is home I don't know why it doesn't feel that way.

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